is an Asian water lily
that grows in ponds or lakes. Although it is generally regarded as an exotic flower, the delicate lotus can grow pretty much anywhere and makes a striking addition to your water garden.
For thousands of years, the lotus flower has been a symbol of spiritual enlightenment
. The flower is also a symbol of purity and beauty that comes out of unsavory conditions, like the muddy pond the lotus calls home. The beautiful flowers close at night and unfold slowly as the sun rises in the morning.
To grow lotus at home, you will need a water garden. This can be a backyard pond or a large water garden container. You can buy lotus seeds online and begin the flowers indoors. The seeds are hard and must be cracked before you sow them in a container with water. A clean, 2-liter bottle works well for germinating seeds
. Drop the lotus seeds in the bottle of warm water and place it on its side in a convenient location. Shake or turn the bottle as you pass and change the water whenever it appears to be cloudy. The seeds will sprout in a couple days.
Once the lotus seeds sprout to a few inches long, remove them from the bottle. Fill a bucket or similar-sized container with 3 inches of dirt and at least 3 inches of water. Press the seeds into the soil and place the container in a sunny location. Remember that the deeper the water, the longer it will take for the lotus to reach the surface. Once the lotus leaves reach the surface, you can remove the root ball from the container and move it to a larger container (like a whiskey barrel) or drop them into a shallow pond.
The first lotus flower
may not appear for about a year, but when it does, it's beauty will be well worth the wait!